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Review

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    Review: Woody Harrelson Stands Tall Amidst Crumbling LAPD In Riveting 'Rampart'

    "Everything you learned at the Academy is bullshit." That's the sage bit of wisdom Date Rape Dave (Woody Harrelson, and we'll get to his cop moniker in a moment) gives a new trainee in the opening frames of Oren Moverman's "Rampart," a searing and riveting look at a crooked cop's decay amidst the cr...

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    Review: Greta Gerwig Is Unleashed, For Better And Worse, In 'The Dish & The Spoon'

    Whether you like it or not, we're going for a ride with Greta Gerwig. Opening with a perspective from the backseat, we see mostly the road ahead through the windshield, an endless dark tunnel with minimal traffic. A cellphone yelps for the driver's attention, to which the actress responds by...

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    Review: Oscar Contender 'In Darkness' A Refreshing & Complex Tale Of Survival During The Holocaust

    In her director's statement for "In Darkness," one of this year's Oscar nominees for Best Foreign Language Film, Agnieszka Holland writes of representations of the Holocaust in literature and cinema that, "One may ask if everything has now been said on this subject. But in my ...

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    Berlinale 2012 Review: Restrained Werner Herzog Still Shines In Gripping 'Death Row' Series

    The prologue of each of the four episodes of “Death Row” is the same: a restless camera prowls through the dismal ante-room, holding cell and injection chamber of an unnamed execution facility, while director Werner Herzog tells us in his familiar teutonic monotone that, as a German and ...

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    Review: 'The Vow' Is For People Who Like To Get Teddy Bears On Valentine's Day

    The things that got us verklempt in the last week include the latest episode of “Downton Abbey” and the “Halftime in America” Chrysler ad with Clint Eastwood. Clearly, it doesn’t take much, but noticeably absent from that list is the would-be weepy “The Vow,” starring Rachel McAdams and Channing Tat...

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    Review: Flavorless 'Journey 2: The Mysterious Island' Isn't Even An Admirable Folly

    Had its filmmakers not hedged all over their creative bets, "Journey 2: The Mysterious Island" might have at least been an admirable folly. Its creators' many attempts to pander to the lowest common denominator and attract as many potential viewers as possible has made 'Journey 2&#...

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    Review: Bela Tarr's Swan Song 'The Turin Horse' Is Despairing But Unforgettable

    If the name Béla Tarr rings any sort of bell in your head, chances are you've already formed an unwavering opinion of his work. He hasn't exactly shaken up his approach since 1988's "Damnation" (that said, this writer -- probably like most -- isn't familiar with his crop of '90s short films), and if...

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    Review: 'Safe House' Is An Intense, But All-Too Familiar Thriller That Doesn't Offer Much Of Anything New

    Featuring a conventional, by-the-numbers dynamic and story, but a crackling, intense momentum and execution, the Denzel Washington-led CIA thriller "Safe House" splits the difference between comfortably traditional and genuinely thrilling, leaving for an entertaining, but frequently overly...

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    SBIFF Review: 'Samsara' Tells The Story Of Our World With Stunning Visuals & Spiritual Heft

    Just what is a non-verbal documentary anyway? If you appreciated the silent visual storytelling of "The Artist" or the cinematic majesty of Terrence Malick's nature cinematography in "The Tree of Life," or, if you're a fan of the cult 1992 documentary "Baraka," you'll be a fan of the latest effort f...

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    Review: 'Father's Day' Is An Early Frontrunner For The Year's Most Awesomely Tasteless Movie

    There is bad taste, and somewhere below that, there is Troma. Proudly pushing the boundaries of every taboo in the book, the company has remodeled itself in recent years in an attempt to feature movies with a slightly sharper craft, as the direct-to-DVD boom and the torture porn subgenre had stolen ...

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